Pit Boss Mahogany vs Sportsman – Is There A Difference?


Hi, I’m Chris I started PelHeat.com back in 2007.

This is a follow on article from my previous post on the Pit Boss Navigator vs Sportsman models. I’ve also noticed that there are three sizes of pellet grills the in the Pit Boss Mahogany range and the Sportsman range that have similar sizes/dimensions. Therefore, I thought it would be useful to also compare these models and try and work out which offers the better value. Sure, the look of a grill is important, but so is getting the best bang for your buck.

Pit Boss Mahogany vs Sportsman
Take, for example, the Mahogany 820D3 (left) and the Sportsman 820 (right), are there really any significant differences between them?: Images – PitBoss-Grills.com

Disclaimer: Hey! By the way… any links on this page that lead to products on Amazon or other sites are affiliate links, and I earn a commission if you make a purchase.

Introduction To The Pit Boss Mahogany vs Sportsman Ranges

There are three sizes of pellet grills/smokers in both the Mahogany and Sportsman ranges which are very similar in size that we’ll discuss in this article.

However, there are models in the Mahogany range where there isn’t currently a Sportsman alternative, such as the Tabletop Mahogany model and the cabinet style Mahogany 1000SC2

There are also some Sportsman-branded vertical pellet smokers, whereas there is currently no Mahogany branded vertical pellet smokers.

Therefore, this comparison purely focuses on the three model sizes below, where there is a direct parallel under each product range. First, below are two tables for quick reference.


Pit Boss Mahogany Pellet Grills/Smokers

Features260 Portable820D31000
Total Cooking Area387 sq.in849 sq.in1,021 sq.in
Main Grate257 sq.in593 sq.in711 sq.in
Hopper Size19 lbs21 lbs21 lbs
Temp Range180-500180-500180-500
Direct Flame Access?YesYesYes
Typical Price$449$649$699

In terms of the ‘Typical Price’ figures above, I’ve referenced them directly from PitBoss-Grills.com, and you can use the button above to check the prices should a sale be on etc.

Now, please bear in mind that your conclusions may be very different from mine if you find a particular model on sale at Amazon.com, for instance.


Pit Boss Sportsman Pellet Grills/Smokers

FeaturesPortable8201100
Total Cooking Area387 sq.in849 sq.in1,610 sq.in
Main Grate257 sq.in593 sq.in711 sq.in
Hopper Size19 lbs21 lbs30 lbs
Temp Range180-500180-500180-500
Direct Flame Access?YesYesYes
Typical Price$549$699$799

In terms of the ‘Typical Price’ figures above, I’ve referenced them directly from PitBoss-Grills.com, and you can use the button above to check the prices should a sale be on etc.

Now, please bear in mind that your conclusions may be very different from mine if you find a particular model on sale at Amazon.com, for instance.


Pit Boss Mahogany Portable vs Sportsman Portable

First up, we’re starting with the portable pellet grill from each range, and as you may have noticed from the specs above, Mahogany Portable and Sportsman Portable are identical.

Really, the only difference between these two pellet grills is their colour schemes, so either mahogany/black or the black and orange highlights of the Sportsman.

Pit Boss Mahogany Portable vs Sportsman Portable
The difference between these two is purely cosmetic, apart from the price: Images – PitBoss-Grills.com

Both have the same control panel for the temperature range of 180 to 500 degrees, and both offer direct flame access for temperatures of 650 degrees plus.

Really, there is only one difference between these two pellet grills over their appearance, and that’s their typical price. The Mahogany Portable is typically $449, and the Sportsman Portable is typically $549.

Therefore, really even if you prefer the colour scheme of the Sportsman would you be willing to pay an additional $100? Personally, I’d keep that money in my pocket and go brown, I mean mahogany.


Pit Boss Mahogany 820D3 vs Sportsman 820

Now we’re stepping up to full-sized horizontal pellet grills/smokers. So unlike their smaller portable siblings above, are there any real differences between these two models?

Well, not really, there are a couple of small differences though. The Mahogany 820D3 features an analogue temperature gauge on its lid which is missing on the Sportsman 820.

The Sportsman 820 features a spice rack attached to its hopper, which is missing on the Mahogany 820D3, but that’s not exactly a significant difference, is it?

Pit Boss Mahogany 820D3 vs Sportsman 820
Again, as with the portable models above, there are very few differences between these two pellet grills/smokers: Images – PitBoss-Grills.com

So is there any difference in their typical price? Oh yes, and that’s really what should lead you to choose one model over the other for their almost identical specifications.

The Pit Boss Mahogany 820D3 is typically priced at $649, and the Sportsman 820 is typically priced at $699. Is the additional $50 worth it to you? Not me, I’d go for the cheaper Mahogany 820D3.


Pit Boss Mahogany 1000 vs Sportsman 1100

We are now down to the final comparison of the two largest pellet grills from each range that directly match up against each other, so are there any significant differences?

Well, as with the last comparison above, the Mahogany 1000 gets an analogue temperature gauge on the lid, and the Sportsman 1100 gets a little spice rack.

Pit Boss Mahogany 1000 vs Sportsman 1100
You may get confused by the total cooking area differences between these two pellet grills: Images – PitBoss-Grills.com

What may come as a bit of shock and confuse you are the total cooking areas of these two identically sized pellet grills. The Mahogany 1000 offers a total of 1,021 sq.in, but the Sportsman 1100 provides a total of 1,610 sq.in!?

Those figures are correct, so what gives? Well, the Sportsman 1100 has an additional Jerky rack over the top rack, which is the reason for the additional cooking area.

Now, as those top racks are so close together, you won’t really be able to fit anything in between the two other than Jerky. Therefore, with that additional rack removed, the cooking area of the Sportsman 1100 is back down to 1,121 sq.in.

So the Sportsman does still have a slightly larger upper rack than that of the Mahogany 1000, but what’s the difference in price? Well, the Mahogany 1000 is $699, and the Sportsman 1100 is $799.

Are the additional Jerky rack and a slightly larger upper rack of the Sportsman 1100 worth it to you for the additional $100? Maybe, if you prefer the look as well, that may be the option to take.


Conclusions On The Pit Boss Mahogany vs Sportsman

So what are my final thoughts? Well, generally speaking, the Mahogany models are of better value than their Sportsman siblings.

There are a few subtle differences between the over their looks/paint finish, but really you are getting the same pellet grill/smoker based on its core features/specifications, as you can tell from the Mahogany Table and Sportsman Table above.

I personally prefer the look of the Sportsman models, but at the same time, I wouldn’t spend an additional $50 to $100 just for that reason.

I would encourage you to click the buttons above to double-check the prices as well. Because when a sale is on, the price differences could be even more significant.

That’s it! Thanks for reading, if you would like to learn more about the wonderful world of pellet BBQs, check out my Wood Pellet Grill/Smoker Guide. 🙂

A to Z List of Pellet Grill/Smoker Brands

A to Z List of Pellet Grill/Smoker Brands

Back in 2007 when I first become aware of pellet grills and smokers the only brand I was really aware of was Traeger. Traeger is really where this whole concept of cooking with pellets started in the 1980s. It was a ‘slow burner’ (pardon the pun) but since the 2010s is really when pellet grills and smokers started to get mainstream awareness, discussed alongside gas and charcoal grills. There are now over 30 pellet grill/smoker brands that I’m aware of, and the link above goes to my A to Z list of brands article.

Now, you may already be aware of a few of the other brands such as Pit Boss, Camp Chef, Z Grills and I’m sure you are aware of Weber, though you may not have known they have entered the pellet grill game. However, they are now many, many more brands to look into. Some may be what are commonly referred to as ‘Traeger clones’, but many others are offering their own unique designs and features.

A to Z List of The Best BBQ Wood Pellets

A pellet grill/smoker is only as good as the BBQ pellets you put into it. The type/quality of the BBQ wood pellets you use will impact temperature performance and smoke flavour. There are many pellet flavours including Apple, Hickory, Mapel, Oak and Walnut to name but a few. However, some brands are hardwood blended pellets whereas others are 100% single wood species.

In this article, I provide details on over 20 brands of BBQ wood pellets, their range of flavours, whether they are 100% single wood species or hardwood blended pellets, their typical price and where they are available. I also provide tips on how to get the best deal when buying BBQ wood pellets and how to test pellet quality. Finally, I discuss the new kid on the block, charcoal pellets and their special attributes compared to all other hardwood BBQ pellets.

Chris - PelHeat.com

Hi, I’m Chris. I started PelHeat.com back in 2007. This website is intended to be an educational resource on BBQ pellets, pellet grills & smokers. I hope you find the information useful.

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